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It’s just a bill, Part 9,867

Monday, Feb 9, 2015 - Posted by Rich Miller

* I’m guessing this one’s gonna face a tough slog

Hunters and other shooting enthusiasts would be allowed to have silencers on their guns under a bill filed in the Illinois legislature.

The bill’s sponsor, Rep. Brandon Phelps, D-Harrisburg, said gun owners want silencers for a simple reason: to avoid hearing loss.

“There are a lot of veterans, a lot of hunters and shooters, who have suffered hearing loss,” Phelps said.

Phelps acknowledged that gun opponents are likely to challenge the bill.

“I’m used to that. They said that about concealed-carry — they said everybody was going to be running around shooting each other, like the wild west,” Phelps said. “That’s the movies.”

* And an AmmoLand writer loves Sen. Bivins’ new bill

Illinois Senator Tim Bivins has introduced an act to allow people with valid concealed carry permits to carry, purchase, and possess switchblade knives, stun guns, or tasers.

It is an incremental reform to the Illinois code. If the bill can make it out of committee and up for a vote, it seems imminently sensible.

Who would object to someone who is legally allowed to carry a concealed pistol, from being allowed to carry a knife, stun gun, or taser in the same circumstances? […]

The ban on knives that open with the push of a button, or “switchblades” comes from an era when yellow journalists were testing the limits of their new found power. They were able to push for a ban on common pocket knives by appealing to emotion and prejudice. Some say that the play “West Side Story” was directly responsible for the ban.

* Other stuff…

* Bill would create prep sports concussion oversight in Illinois

* Rauner Doesn’t Like Senate Bill

       

34 Comments
  1. - walker - Monday, Feb 9, 15 @ 11:39 am:

    Ear plugs?

    Silencers are just another way for macho wannabes to pretend they are special forces.


  2. - DuPage - Monday, Feb 9, 15 @ 11:41 am:

    Aren’t silencers against federal law?


  3. - Dave - Monday, Feb 9, 15 @ 11:43 am:

    Here is a good bit of information about silencers that as far as I can tell is accurate. Before people start overreacting, try and throw out what you have seen in the movies. Aye, this is from a silencer company, but if they sell them, they do try to keep up with the current laws and information.

    http://www.silencerco.com/education/


  4. - John Boch - Monday, Feb 9, 15 @ 11:50 am:

    Suppressors: What’s the big deal? Like short-barreled rifles the Illinois General Assembly approved a couple of years ago (and signed into law by Pat Quinn of all people), there’s a federal background check and a $200 tax stamp that must be bought from the feds before you can pick it up. It’s not like Joe Sixpack can go to Guns-R-Us after work and pick up a couple then be back home in time for dinner. Short barreled rifles haven’t been problematic and neither will suppressors once they are approved.

    Benefits of “cans”: Hearing protection primarily. It also is less intrusive to man and beast around where a person is firing their gun. It’s not a “silencer”, it merely reduces the gunshot report to a loud clap in most cases.

    Like short-barreled rifles, the Illinois General Assembly may not pass this on the first go around, but through education it’ll get passed eventually. Sort of like civil unions and medical marijuana eventually passed once legislators were educated about the topics.

    As for automatic knives, and electronic “stun” devices: Again, modest steps to open avenues of self-defense for the law-abiding in Illinois.

    Today’s perfectly legal “assisted opening” knives are very similar to fully “automatic” knives this proposal seeks to legalize. Yes, some folks pejoratively call automatic knives “switch blades” by the same people who disparage affordable handguns as “Saturday Night Specials”.

    Stun devices? They’ve been legal to buy forever in IL. Have we had a rash of drive-by Taserings? Not that I’m aware of.

    I will close with the fact that Indiana has had all of the above for many years and the criminal misuse of the above is somewhere between zero and nil. Then again, they had right-to-carry for decades before Illinois started to catch up with them.

    John


  5. - Skirmisher - Monday, Feb 9, 15 @ 11:51 am:

    Hey, everyone- Hardly a country on earth is more restrictive on firearms than the United Kingdom. However, where large caliber firearms are concerned (Hunting and target rifles), the British require the use of silencers in some areas. It is a bit of a jolt to an American to go a shooting club and see all of these silenced rifles, but the reduction in noise is very impressive, and it permits shooting ranges to be located in relatively developed areas without causing a nuisance. The prohibition on these things over here is a hold-over from the over-reaction to gangster movies.


  6. - Been There - Monday, Feb 9, 15 @ 11:52 am:

    ===The ban on knives that open with the push of a button, or “switchblades”===
    Heck, I didn’t even know switchblades were illegal. And I always thought my first illegal activity was blowing off fireworks. It looks like the blade that use to be in my tackle box was.


  7. - How Ironic - Monday, Feb 9, 15 @ 12:01 pm:

    “The bill’s sponsor, Rep. Brandon Phelps, D-Harrisburg, said gun owners want silencers for a simple reason: to avoid hearing loss.

    “There are a lot of veterans, a lot of hunters and shooters, who have suffered hearing loss,” Phelps said.”

    I am a gun owner, and enjoy an afternoon down at the range. I say “Wear ear protection”. Invest in a good pair of muffs, or in-ear plugs.

    Silencers if used, don’t negate the need for hearing protection. They don’t make it ‘whisper’ quiet, but they do lower the db level significantly.

    The problem for the general public is too much ‘movie magic’. A silencer doesn’t reduce the noise level that much.


  8. - downstate commissioner - Monday, Feb 9, 15 @ 12:08 pm:

    fine line between “switchblade” and “assisted opening” knives; don’t quite know the difference. The assisted opener in my pocket is a sturdy work knife, heavy blade, serrations, windshield punch, seat belt cutter; it opens as fast as a switch blade- main advantage is fast one-handed use.
    Silencers are common in Europe, mainly for the convenience of the surrounding public. Don’t have much use for one myself, but have no problem with them…


  9. - kimocat - Monday, Feb 9, 15 @ 12:10 pm:

    Maybe I’m different, but if somebody decides to shoot up a place — I want to hear the gunshots. And if you need to use ear protection anyway, it seems that suppressors are more likely to be used by people who shouldn’t have guns in the first place.


  10. - anon - Monday, Feb 9, 15 @ 12:11 pm:

    There are these things called earmuffs. Hunters wear them all the time.


  11. - Empty Suit - Monday, Feb 9, 15 @ 12:16 pm:

    So..as was explained to me, I can carry one of those Rambo knives on my belt legally but if I carry a knife the size of my finger and that opens with a button it’s a felony?
    WT Hey!


  12. - How Ironic - Monday, Feb 9, 15 @ 12:21 pm:

    @Kimocat

    “Maybe I’m different, but if somebody decides to shoot up a place — I want to hear the gunshots. ”

    You will. Google silencer shooting on YouTube. There’s all sorts of videos with people using them.

    Like I said, Hollywood has done a great job overstating the noise suppression of silencers. They certainly dial down the noise, but it’s hardly ’silent’.


  13. - relocated - Monday, Feb 9, 15 @ 12:22 pm:

    I’m struggling to find an actual benefit to hunters from using a suppressor. In the field a competent hunter wouldn’t be firing a large number of shots consecutively to risk hearing loss. The only times that might apply are for shotgun sports where suppression technology is not widely available. At the range there are no downsides to protective devices. This seems to be pandering to the NRA crowd.


  14. - Rusty618 - Monday, Feb 9, 15 @ 12:29 pm:

    I shot over 200 rounds yesterday at a private range from several different guns. Guess what? I wore 2 layers of ear protection.

    I can understand the hunters point of view though, as listening for prey does play a roll when you are hunting.


  15. - Precinct Captain - Monday, Feb 9, 15 @ 12:41 pm:

    ==fine line between “switchblade” and “assisted opening” knives; don’t quite know the difference.==

    There’s some text and videos from MoJo, part of a thing from a “knife lobby” article they did a few years ago.

    http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2012/12/knife-types-switchblade


  16. - Anonymous - Monday, Feb 9, 15 @ 12:54 pm:

    The media on the silencer bill has also been misleading. The possession of a silencer would still be a violation of the Criminal Code in Illinois if Phelps’ bill were to pass. So this bill appears to be merely a press-pop (big surprise)


  17. - Federalist - Monday, Feb 9, 15 @ 12:56 pm:

    Allow ’silencers.’ Wow, I think not!


  18. - Wordslinger - Monday, Feb 9, 15 @ 1:20 pm:

    “West Side Story” and switchblades? Who knew “Ammoland” was into the show tunes.


  19. - Rat race? What's that? - Monday, Feb 9, 15 @ 1:23 pm:

    Terrible premise for sponsoring a bill. Terrible. It’s nonsense that will get laughed at - and should.

    For me, a suppressor is a way for me not to bother anyone as opposed to any other reason. There is a shooting range close to my home - which I belong to - and I can often hear shooting. Sure wish I could suppress my firearms so I didn’t have to worry about bothering others with my noise - but still enjoy some target practice.

    Suppressors are just another example in a very long line of examples that are gasp-inspiring in Illinois but perfectly legal and acceptable nearly everywhere else. Why is Illinois such a Twilight Zone? Why don’t people in this state think life exists elsewhere with these things with no problems?


  20. - Todd - Monday, Feb 9, 15 @ 1:31 pm:

    Its not a press flop. There is a lot to go into it to make it work. This was the initial filing. Both the criminal code and FOID act need to be amended

    Lets talk about a few of the FACTS about suppressors:

    1. They are legal for ownership,in 39 states. 3 midwest states outlaw them for private ownership, illinois, Iowa, Minnisota.

    2. 35 states allowmthem for the taking of game.

    3. They are regulated but not banned under federal law. Just to transfer a suppressor between federal firearms licensees takes about 2 months right now. Tranfer to a private party is running 9 months.

    4 to own one you must submit finger prints, and go through the background check after having a law enforcement chief sign off on it.

    5. There is a federal $200 tax required for each suppressor an individual owns. And if you decide to trade one for another, you pay again.

    6. They are not silent. A .223 caliber noise gets cut down from about 180 db to 130db. Hearing protection is still required at that point as it is about as loud as a jack hammer.

    So why have one? Cuts down on noise, they improve accuracy, reduce recoil. When hutning I’ve touched off a round and had my ears ringing for 3 days with one of my handguns. Ear plugs and ear muffs don’t really go well with hunting, so not having to deal with potential hearing loss or imparment and still be able to hear game is a benefit.

    In the home for self defense, touching off a gun in a confined space really reverberates the sound. Try going to an indoor range some time. Imusually double up,on hearing protection there.

    Lastly, whynshould they be illegal? If someone has a FOID, has to gomthrough a finger print background check and pay a $200 tax as well as waitabout 9 months? What it the problem?

    We heard in the run up,to concealed carry that people would shootmeach other over parking spaces. We would have blood in the streets. It would be the wild west. NONE of that has happened. So like the other 39 states, this would for the most part be a yawn to the average person. Just like the cops have said concealed carry was no big deal a year later, 92000 permits, less than 200 revoked for any reason.

    This will be much the same.


  21. - Pot calling kettle - Monday, Feb 9, 15 @ 1:33 pm:

    I don’t feel safe without a street sweeper. But, maybe that’s just me.

    But seriously, guns are legal; the Supreme Court has put some pretty tight limits on how far regulation can go. Many of the differences between what is legal and what is not are more about superficial appearances than anything else.

    What the Supremes have not restricted is registration and purchasing limits. I would rather see the gunshow loophole closed and tracking of guns so that those used in crimes can be tracked back to the original purchaser.


  22. - Todd - Monday, Feb 9, 15 @ 1:53 pm:

    The so called gun show loophole has been “closed” in illinois for some time. Unless you would care to define it for us.


  23. - Wordslinger - Monday, Feb 9, 15 @ 2:09 pm:

    Todd, you bring up gun shows. Isnt the problem here straw buyers running over to shows in Merrillville and Hammond to buy for gang bangers?

    Given your interest in the subject, what would you say are the sources of gangbangers and felons here getting guns?

    (John, I’d ask you, but since you like to brag online about how you “lose” your guns, I think I know your answer already).


  24. - crazybleedingheart - Monday, Feb 9, 15 @ 2:28 pm:

    “In the home for self defense, touching off a gun in a confined space really reverberates the sound.”

    If your likelihood of firing a gun in defense of castle is high enough to be concerned about the *noise,* it would appear you might want to look into lifting the IL ban on crocodile-filled moats.


  25. - Empty Suit - Monday, Feb 9, 15 @ 2:48 pm:

    Hmm maybe the switchblade law makes sense..no silencer needed


  26. - FormerParatrooper - Monday, Feb 9, 15 @ 2:58 pm:

    Allowing the use of silencers in Illinois is not going to lead in an increase of crime.

    There is not a whole of crime committed with silencers anywhere. I cannot recall the last time I even heard of a crime committed with a silencer or than possession without a tax stamp.

    What’s the big deal if they legal Illinois? Look at them as another source of revenue.


  27. - RonOglesby - Now in Texas - Monday, Feb 9, 15 @ 3:02 pm:

    most folks who rail against lifting the ban on suppressors generally use one of two arguments…

    1- I want to hear the bad guys shooting
    or
    2- So what put on hearing protection

    Both show ignorance of what suppressors do and dont do and are really simple knee-jerk arguments made out of ignorance of firearms. Many of these same people using these arguments would love to have the gun laws of Germany or the UK. Both places where (if you own a gun, have the ID/permit) can generally get a suppressor. Hell, its considered polite!

    As Todd and others have mentioned. Its not james bond. There is still plenty of noise. And hearing loss is compounded and never regenerating.

    I ask that if you argue against legalization (think now… $200 fee, FBI background check, signature from local chief of police…) that you really think and come up with logical arguments other than these two. To those that understand suppressors you show yourself ignorant of them and it weakens your argument greatly (unless of course you are only arguing points to your own side).


  28. - downstate commissioner - Monday, Feb 9, 15 @ 3:53 pm:

    $200 plus the cost of the silencer + paperwork + registration (with the feds) + 9 months wait: Think I’d really need one to go thru all that…
    I don’t hunt, and if I shoot an intruder, hearing loss is the last thing that I would be thinking about…


  29. - Todd - Monday, Feb 9, 15 @ 4:02 pm:

    Word –

    I didn’t bring up gun shows, Pot did. But since you asked;

    the largest seems to come from the use of straw buyers. We know that 1/2 the gun picked up in Chicago come from out of state. We know that criminals may go acros the border to Indiana and use phoney IDs to obtain firearms. We also know through tracing reports that a fiar number come from Mississippi. Due to cultural and family ties, they again use people as straws to buy guns there. Any “transfer” or sale of a firearm between private parties twhere they are not from the same state is a federal crime.

    Add to that you have home break ins where firearms are stolen and the robbing of commercial shipments, UPS, FEDEX and even rail cars.

    for those here in Illinois, outside of the stolen guns it appears that straw buyers are a ;large source. Girl friends or friends who have clean records ans FOID cards traffic guns for their felonous friends. and then think its no big deal.

    Few if any seem to be prosecuted.


  30. - Chuck in IL - Monday, Feb 9, 15 @ 5:28 pm:

    “Few if any seem to be prosecuted”

    And therein lies the problem. The gun grabbers are always clamoring for more laws, but they never seem to interested in upholding the ones we have. For the record, silencers just make sense. If your natural instinct is to oppose them, ask yourself why. Forget everything you have seen in the movies and on TV about silencers (guns in general really) and look at the places that allow them. Investigate how many crimes were committed with them. Then give me your reasons for opposition.


  31. - Wordslinger - Monday, Feb 9, 15 @ 9:25 pm:

    Todd, can you ship guns via Fed Ex and UPS? I didn’t know that.

    I thought guns by mail were outlawed after Lee Harvey supposedly ordered that rifle out of Chicago through the mail.

    Barring mail sales was an NRA initiative back in the day, if I recall.

    How can gun guys assist law enforcement in ending straw buyers and those who pretend to lose their guns like John Boch?


  32. - RNUG - Monday, Feb 9, 15 @ 10:07 pm:

    == Word ==,

    The key word there was commercial. I believe shipments to someone with the proper federal firearms / dealer licenses is done all the time.


  33. - FormerParatrooper - Tuesday, Feb 10, 15 @ 6:29 am:

    FedEx and UPS will accept firearms, with restrictions. I sent a rifle back to the manufacturer recently for warranty work. It was simple to do. The firearm was shipped back to my residence.


  34. - Chuck in IL - Tuesday, Feb 10, 15 @ 10:04 am:

    Any interstate gun purchase must be sent to an FFL, barring special provisions for antiques and collectables. There is no mail order loophole, anymore than there ever was a gunshow loophole.


Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.


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